Friday, June 27, 2008

Madrona Farm

This is something I've been meaning to blog about for several weeks, but keep getting distracted. When Ry and I went to visit his mom in Victoria, BC last year, we stopped at a little roadside food stand where they buy a lot of their produce, Madrona Farm. The island of Victoria has tons of little sustainable and eco-friendly farms.

The landowners have recently decided to sell the land, which will likely spell the end of Madrona. Jo and Mike have gotten involved with the Friends of Madrona Society, who are attempting to purchase the land and save the farm. Saving Madrona Farm will be posting video podcasts documenting the fight to save Madrona Farms. Read and tell people about this project, and if you're inclined, help in the fight.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Decisions, decisions

You're 15 months old. You have a cup of milk in one hand and a giraffe in the other. Your mom is slicing grapes and you really want one. What do you do?

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Recent Happenings

My friend Autumn just spent the last 5 days visiting. It was wonderful. Ry let us go out a couple times for shopping and other girlie stuff. Thanks honey. Usually when we travel back to the prairie we're visiting so many people that I don't get to spend much time with her. We made up for lost time and talked about everything we missed in each other's lives in the past year. T also warmed right up to her since she's such a natural mom. Hoorah.

In other news, Ry was driving home from work the other day and saw one of the giant climbers sitting, waiting to be picked up by the trash man. We dropped by when he got home and chatted with the homeowners. They said their grandkids had outgrown it and it was ours for the having. We loaded it into the truck and sold it on craigslist for the exact amount we paid for ours. Hehe. Bonus.

Our friends who generally watch Chief while we're away just found out that she has to be on bed rest (at 10 weeks!). We thought we might have to board Chief when we go to Victoria in July. Instead, we got a flyer in our fence for "Ethan's Smiling Summer Service." Ethan is 9 years old and lives a few blocks up from us. He and his mom came over yesterday to get the lowdown on our trip. He's going to feed and litter Chief and water my garden while we're away. He's also super cheap. Apparently he has a lego addiction that his mom isn't feeding anymore. I think we're going to get the entire trip for what a couple of days of boarding Chief would have cost.

We've also met a nearby family with 2 teenage girls who babysit. Score!! They are coming over tomorrow to spend some time with T. Finally we may be able to go out for a date night like normal couples. Also, I need a babysitter for when Ry travels this fall, since I have a night class two days a week.

T is teething something wicked right now. He's trying to cut 2 molars and has been absolutely miserable for the past 2 days. He's been running a fever and going everywhere with a finger in his mouth. He ate pretty well most of today, but refused dinner. We finally got some grapes, a few bites of watermelon and chocolate ice cream down him. I just hope it's enough that he doesn't wake up hungry in the middle of the night. Pop molars, pop.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Shrimp Class

Today was our first day of swim lessons at the Y. T is part of the "Shrimp/Kipper" class, which basically means that we sing songs and blow bubbles for a half hour. It was fun though, and interesting to see how you go about teaching 3 toddlers to swim. Apparently the afternoon class has 12 people in it, and the instructor said our little class was much easier to work with. I don't realize what a giant T is until I see that he's bigger than the other 18-month-old kids in this class.

Make new friends

As I've discussed before, it's tough to make new friends, even when you share "events" centered around your kids. Since Ry is out of town tonight, T and I went to see a kid's concert at a nearby Barnes and Noble. We ran into a friend from my mom's group and she invited me to dinner with her daughter and husband. It was a really nice time, and fun to watch the kids together. They sat us at one of those big round booths (surprising not at the back of the restaurant) so the kids were in highchairs right next to each other. Hilarity ensued. They stole each other's crayons, food, and sippy cups and since the chairs were on wheels, kept scooting each other around.

It's also nice to have an adult conversation with people you genuinely enjoy. As my dad would say, they pass the beer test.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Still Normal

Today T had his 15 month physical. The doc says he is still normal. He's right on track developmentally, and Dr. Z dismissed my concerns about his not being particularly verbal yet. She said that by 18 months he should be saying 5 - 10 words and since he says 4 or 5 right now he's all good. Whew.

He weighed 24 pounds, 9 ounces today, which places him in the 50th percentile for weight. His head is also in the 50th percentile. He also grew almost 2 inches in the past 3 months and was 32.5 inches today. That, ladies and gentlemen, puts him in the 90th percentile for height. Dr. Z said that he's not underweight, he's just "settling into a tall, lean frame." 'Scuse me? How did we end up with a tall, lean baby? Also, he doesn't look lean to me, but I suppose that could be because he was so skinny for the first 4 or 5 months that now he looks delightfully chubby to me.

She also said that it's OK for T to have a tan. In fact, it's probably good for him to get some un-sunscreened sun each day (a few minutes). I don't usually buy into hype like this, but when I read about melonoma on the rise, it makes me want to do everything I can to keep his little skin burn-free. Oh, in the picture he is pouring the water out of the pool so he can then go splash in the puddles it makes. Apparently it's a lot more fun than actually playing in the pool.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

A Sesame Adventure

We went to Sesame Place yesterday. For those who are not aware, Sesame Place is an amusement part designed for kids ages 2 - 7. T is a little bit young, but he still had a blast! Most of the attractions are water attractions, but they also have a fair number of kiddy rides. I think these shapes were designed to be climbed over, but T was tossing them around like he was a professional wrestler.

This is one of those spinny rides where the whole ride spins and the individual balloons spin. Ry wasn't a big fan, but T thought it was the best time he'd had in a long time.

I think this picture pretty much sums up how he felt about the water stuff. Seriously, he could've stayed at Elmo's water works the entire day and been a happy happy boy.

Here he is passed out in his stroller. He took over an hour long nap and slept really well last night. We bought season passes since it's only about 20 minutes away from the house. I decided we'd be a lot more likely to go here than the beach, which is more like an hour and twenty minutes away.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

My Tiny Love,

Today you are almost 15 months old. I can only hope I will remember today for the rest of my life. I want to remember it not because you were perfectly behaved (you weren't) or because you didn't throw any tantrums (you did), but because it so perfectly encapsulates the little boy you are becoming too quickly.

This morning we went shopping to buy your Daddy a Father's Day gift. He's terrific, by the way. You are a very lucky boy to have a Dad like him. You have his sweet nature and good heart. I can tell already. You got a little cranky because you were tired of sitting in a shopping cart. I don't blame you.

After we got home, you made it abundantly clear that you were ready for a nap. After a week and a half of 3 hour naps, you surprised me with a 1 hour nap today. I barely made it into the shower before you got up. Then you made short work of your lunch. Today it was bread, leftover chicken and mixed vegetables. Really though, you only eat the carrots and green beans.

We also went to Lee's Turkey Farm today to meet up with some other Moms and babies and to pick strawberries. At first, you were content to run up and down the rows. After you figured out that you could pick the strawberries off the plants yourself ... watch out. You were covered with red, sticky juice in an instant. You ate the leaves and stems too. Mmm, fiber. At least it wasn't rocks or mulch this time. I paid the cashier extra for your little field banquet.

Your Dad was helping some friends move tonight, so it was just you and me for dinner and bedtime too. I made your favorite meal, pasta with peas and pesto. You make yummy noises when you eat, just like your Daddy.

After dinner we went outside to play. It was a really beautiful evening. You discovered the joy of throwing your sippy cup down the slide. Again and again you would retrieve it, give it a toss and look up at me and say "Uh Oh." You also slid down the slide all by yourself for the first time tonight. When you got up, I said "Yeah, Tucker" and you clapped your pudgy little hands. I chased you around the yard for a little while and then just sat and watched you play. Words cannot explain how much I love you or how much peace is in my heart when you are near.

Now you're sleeping. You rock and put your little butt in the air when you go to sleep. It's when you're sleeping that I remember how big you've gotten. You fit in your crib now in a way you never did when you were an infant. I love you so much, little man. I can't wait to see what you'll come up with tomorrow.


Sunday, June 08, 2008

Some complaints

Because I feel like complaining.

1. My ears itch.
2. Whenever I swallow they also crackle.
3. And my throat still feels like someone wedged a balloon behind my tonsils.
4. It's supposed to be 99 F tomorrow.
5. The organic pest stuff I used on my garden makes my hands smell like eggs.

Friday, June 06, 2008

A week of illness and singing produce

All 3 of us have been sick this week. We've all had some mutation of a cold that started with T, took up residence in Ry and finally wormed it's way past my immune system yesterday. Poor T was finally feeling pretty good today and I, of course, felt like my head might explode at the tiniest noise. Instead of going to the park or playing outside all day, I flipped on Veggie Tales and dragged myself outside onto one of the patio chairs so T could play.

Veggie Tales, by the way, is high comedy. The people who produce this stuff have a wicked sense of humor. The characters, of course, are all produce with a flair for the dramatic and a love of Gilbert and Sullivan. I have to say that the "Joking Sumo" (sung to the tune of Mikado's "Wandering Minstrel") is one of my favorites. There is a song about a squash jonesing for a cheeseburger with lettuce that I find a bit disturbing. Does this make them cannibals? Anyhow, it's nice to have a kid's show that a.) has a good message, b.) doesn't condescend to kids and c.) doesn't make me want to bang my head against the wall.

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

A surprise behind every door

I had just walked in from the store
I heard slashing behind the tub door
In the bath having fun
Were my husband and son
Then T looked up and signed "no more"

Sunscreen and little boys

Every time we go outside, I slather T in a 60+ sunscreen. Despite my best efforts, he is *still* getting a tan. The last time we saw the doctor, he "reminded" me to use sun block whenever I take T outside. What else can I do? Run around after him with the sunscreen bottle?

Monday, June 02, 2008

Catch 22

We started looking into some child care options for T for a few half days a week. We were looking to see if we could afford some child care to a.) give me a little non-baby time and b.) give me options to take more than one class a semester and still see my husband. We checked out the Goddard School, which as Ry put it, is the "Cadillac of Day Care Centers." Cannot afford. The private care options are better, but still expensive, and many commercial day care centers don't allow half days until your child reaches the age of 2.

See, here's the issue:

I'd really like to be able to finish my degree in less than 4 years both because I'm excited to start my career as a nurse and also because I'd like to start contributing to our household sooner rather than later (I have latent guilt over not contributing income). In order for us to afford child care I would need to go back to work or drastically change our lifestyle. Part time options aren't great, but are available. The problem is that I'd be using the child care to go to work, not to go to school. Now, I'm working to pay for child care and still taking classes in the evening. The drastic lifestyle changes aren't really an option either since we'd like to remain homeowners and all that. We qualify for zero financial aid (except unsubsidized loans). Is it worth it to acquire some debt short term so I can finish school a couple years sooner and therefore start working earlier or does it make more sense to just take my class or two a semester? This is all complicated, of course, by the fact that we aren't done having kids and I may need to take a semester or two off.

Umm. Grrr. I wish that I would have known what I wanted to do with my life 10 years ago when I was going to college the first time.
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